Mindfulness approaches to childbirth and parenting

Hughes, Annie; Williams, Mark; Bardacke, Nancy; Duncan, Larissa G.; Dimidjian, Sona; Goodman, Sherryl H.
October 2009
British Journal of Midwifery;Oct2009, Vol. 17 Issue 10, p630
Academic Journal
Mindfulness meditation is increasingly being used as a way of managing pain, reducing stress and anxiety and, in the form of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), as a way of reducing the risk of recurrence in depression (NICE, 2004). This article considers its potential for parents preparing for childbirth focusing on three areas: managing pain during pregnancy and labour; reducing risk of perinatal depression; and increasing 'availability' of attention for the infant. The encouraging evidence to date suggests the possibility that mindfulness has an important contribution to make, both for reducing vulnerability in high-risk groups and as a universal intervention. INSETS: Case Study 1: A mindful approach to physical pain;Case Study 2: A mindful approach to mental pain;Case Study 3: A mindful approach to parenting.


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